Albert (Bob) Cornelius Peterson
Submitted by: Marjorie Winslow-Kulba
Albert (Bob) Cornelius Peterson served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The dates of service are: Known September 18, 1917-April 19, 1919 & February 2, 1921-February 1, 1924.
Albert (Bob) Cornelius Peterson was born May 3, 1892 in Muskegon, Michigan.
He enlisted in the Army and trained at Fort Custer, Battle Creek, Michigan. He served in the 528th Field Artillery, 85th Division, Battery A, during World War One. He achieved the rank of corporal. He saw action in Toul Sector, France from Nov. 1-Nov. 11, 1918.
He wrote a letter home, describing the last two hours before the armistice was signed. It was published in the "Muskegon Chronicle" on January 11, 1919. He wrote,
"We returned from a little journey to the front last week. Fortunately we didn't have any casualties while there, although it was rather uncomfortable at times. While we were there, Fritzie started some of his hellish work each night at just about dusk. It would last three hours, then stop abruptly, and commence again just before dawn. The last two hours before hostilities ceased, on the eleventh of this month, was something I will never forget, a continuous roar and crash of heavy guns, sending their emblems of death and smashing into the enemy's territory. Explosion after explosion could be heard within his lines, but for some reason or other, he didn't retaliate. It was rather strange, because he had been somewhat active the night before. It was a wonderful spectacle-in the early hours of the forenoon, regiment after regiment of artillery, standing almost hub to hub, awaiting Fritzie's answer to the armistice. Somehow I think it was fortunate that he did sign, as 'hell' would have been let loose on him if he hadn't, and he would have been much out of luck. I can't begin to describe how the country looks after being swept over by the fighting forces. Great shell holes everywhere, towns ruined, acres and acres of barbed wire entanglements, miles and miles of trenches, heaps of unexploded shells, dugouts in the sides of hills, and some things I don't care to speak of."
Upon returning state-side, he rejoined the military. He joined the 59th Infantry at Camp Lewis, Washington. He was then transferred to Vancouver Barracks, Washington with the 7th Infantry, Company M. He finished his military service as a sergeant and expert machine gunner.
He died in Muskegon, Michigan on May 6, 1980.